Is red light therapy the fountain of youth?

HOUSTON – Red light tanning beds and masks are being touted as the new fountain of youth. The therapy encourages your cells to heal faster and produce more collagen. Which means red lights could reduce scarring as well as eliminate wrinkles. 

Now, many tanning salons offer red light treatments. 

Chloea Skok, spa director at Planet Beach Spray and Spa in Memorial, said she has been using the red light therapy for full body and facial treatments. She said she’s seen an improvement to her rosacea, stretch marks and back pain.

“I'm happy with the results, not only does it help eliminate my back pain but it decreases inflammation, which is something I was suffering from,” Skok said.

Dermatologist Sherry Ingraham from Advanced Dermatology in Sugarland said red light is actually great for you because it penetrates deeper than other treatments can. She said the light is able to stimulate collagen, elastin, it's anti-inflammatory and it’s safe.

“You're not going to burn yourself typically with red light,” Ingraham said.

However, if you’re using red lights at tanning salons, you have to do your research to determine if it's going to be effective.

"Some tanning salons are going to have beds that they purchased specifically that are branded for this purpose and then some people are just replacing the bulbs. The problem is in those cases we just don't have enough data and we can't really validate how effective they are or what wavelength you're getting,” Ingraham said.

Skok said the machine called The Beauty Angel is specially designed for this kind of therapy, and she said clients have noticed improvements in their skin.

“After they use it, they really enjoy it, they see the benefits almost immediately and they keep coming back,” Skok said.

Ingraham said you may notice results after a few treatments, but to get lasting effects someone would need to dedicate three days a week for at least six months or longer in the red light.

Skok said she regularly goes three times a week.